Mainz SoSe 2022 October 27, 2022

By (International Global Studies, Middlebury College) - abroad from 03/29/2022 to 07/22/2022 with

Middlebury Schools Abroad: Middlebury in Mainz

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned that I am capable of living in a foreign country and speaking a foreign language! It was incredibly empowering and rewarding.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The courses were not too hard, nor were they too easy. I found myself well supported by both TAs and professors.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Absolutely phenomenal. Heike is responsive, kind, and incredibly helpful.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The housing was of high quality. However, the heat in the summer made the room unbearable to sleep or work in.

* Food:

Food in Germany is wonderful, and of low cost. Most of it is self-made.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

It was very easy to get to know other students.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

It was very easy to get the vaccine QR codes needed.

* Safety:

Mainz and Frankfurt are incredibly safe.

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

Very easily! Kulturgeld helped to fund cultural interests, and food was very affordable in Germany.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 40 euros
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Meal prep! Plan out what you need ahead of time, and go into ReWe/Aldi with a list.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

We took a "speech pledge" to only speak in the language while in the program.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Advanced
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? A 400-level German course.
How many hours per day did you use the language? 10+
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Go to Germany ahead of time. If on campus, go to language tables or Kaffestunde.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Dorm
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • International Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Empowerment
  • Exploration
  • Rigour
* What could be improved?
  • Connection with other German students
  • Interaction with Erasmus students
  • More time in Frankfurt
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? There is so much more to do in the area than you think! Do some research ahead of time, talk to other JGU students, and always say yes to some adventures.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Kultur und Komposition

Course Department: Middlebury
Instructor: Heike Fahrenberg
Instruction Language: German
Comments: The class was not challenging, and was incredibly helpful in preparing me for German coursework while asking me to reflect on my time in Mainz.
Credit Transfer Issues: N/A
Course Name/Rating:

Soziologie des Kinderkriegens

Course Department: Soziologie
Instructor: Laura Völkle
Instruction Language: German
Comments: The course was not too challenging, despite being a master's level seminar. There was good participation from all students. It was easy to participate (even as a non-native speaker), and to ask both textual questions and questions about vocabulary.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Deutschland in Europa, Europa in Deutschland

Course Department: Political Science
Instructor: Dr. Alexandru Filip
Instruction Language: German
Comments: The course was not super challenging. I found Dr. Filip could be hard to understand at times, but he was always very welcoming to questions via emails or office hours.
Credit Transfer Issues: Make sure to send the syllabus ahead of time if you are counting it towards a major (ie, regional courses for IGS)! It's a pain when you get back.
Course Name/Rating:

Eine Immer Engere Union?

Course Department: History
Instructor: Bastian Knautz
Instruction Language: GErman
Comments: The course was incredibly well-instructed, and the course content was clear. The only downside was that, as an intro-level seminar, there was a lower level of engagement from students.
Credit Transfer Issues: